I have written a few helpful, I hope, articles on visiting us by train but haven’t done a lot of travelling around by train myself. I have trained-it to Tywyn when the other half couldn’t make it but have never used the train for a day trip other than the odd journey back from Aberdovey. Well, on a recent visit, we took the chance to give the train ago.
In its Victorian heyday, Barmouth’s Panorama Walk was a must do to the extent that there was a tea room and an admission charge. Those days are long gone and your average visitor is unlikely to be aware that there is a walk never mind be able to summon up the reserves of energy required to attempt the climb. However, with the advent of modern technology, i.e. the car, you can whittle the walk down to manageable proportions by cutting out the trudge of the road walk.
Aberdovey has a great beach, donkey rides, a fish & chip shop, ice cream shop, and a pier from which you can enjoy a spot of crabbing. That lot should be on anybody’s checklist of essential beach-related facilities and Aberdovey ticks them all off.
As Barmouth is so big I couldn’t fit it all into a single post! Here is the concluding post for Barmouth’s Heritage Trail. Please let me know if I have missed something that should have been there.
When you think of Barmouth, what images spring to mind? Whatever your age there’s a good chance that they’ll include donkey rides, deckchairs, candy floss, wind brakes, sandcastles, crabbing, ice-cream and the dodgems. When we visited in August Barmouth had all that together with yapping dogs, running kids, stressed mums and dive-bombing seagulls.
The Cambrian Coast Line is probably the UK’s prettiest railway line running through the Snowdonia National Park and operating between Aberystwyth in the south and Pwllheli in the north.
Discover medieval castles, sandy beaches, nature reserves, steam railways, museums and art galleries all without the hassle of finding a car parking spot when the rest of the world appear to be attempting the exact same thing. For a stress free trip, take the train and hop on and off when and where you fancy.
At the end of the 13th century Edward I invaded Wales determined that the locals would submit to his divine right to rule. He achieved this with stone building a mighty ‘iron ring’ of fortresses with which he encircled the rebellious Welsh princes in their Snowdonian stronghold. This iron ring consisted of Harlech, in the south, and Caernarfon, Colwyn, and a little later, Beaumaris in the north and east.
The Mawddach Trail is a 9-mile sign-posted trail along the river estuary between Dolgellau and Barmouth. The trail follows the route of a disused Great Western railway line and is suitable for walkers, cyclists, wheelchairs and pushchairs. If you don’t fancy the entire trail, or if your visit is short, there are plenty of free car parking places along route (e.g. A493/A470 junction). If you are a keen bird watcher, then the estuary is a real magnet for migratory birds and the trail takes you through RSPB protected areas.
Machynlleth is a market town to the south of Tywyn that has special significance in the history of Wales because of its connection with Owain Glyndŵr. Owain led the campaign for Welsh independence between 1400 and 1415 and Machynlleth is the site for the first Welsh Parliament held in 1404. This Parliament was held in the Parliament buildings which are still open to the public today. The earliest written reference to Machynlleth relates to a Royal charter granted by Edward I to Owen de la Pole, Lord of Powys, in 1291, giving him the right to hold “a market at Machynlleth every Wednesday for ever and two fairs every year”. This Wednesday market is still a busy and popular day in Machynlleth 700 years later.
Nant Gwernol is a rocky river gorge high above the Talyllyn Valley and offers a couple of walks steeped in the history of the Welsh slate industry. The Cascade Trail is a one mile circular walk starting at the Nant Gwernol Station which follows the riverside and offers picturesque views of a series of falls and the surrounding forest.